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November 5, 2018

Bringing The Heat

Heaven on SevenHot sauce, the fermentation of peppers and vinegar! If you have ever been to Heaven on Seven, Chef Jimmy Bannos’s iconic nod to the cuisine of New Orleans in Chicago, you can see a whole wall of said elixirs! But as we have become a global civilization, the flavors preferred in different cultures have most recently come to view! Most notably Sriracha and Gochujang.


It’s not just about Tabasco any more. Utilizing some unfamiliar methods and peppers, hot sauces have expanded into a plethora of unique infusions! Peri Peri is blowing up, the Portuguese condiment and marinade. Aji Amarillo, chiles of a Peruvian decent can be pureed and made into a spicy addition which recently showed up on a Chili’s Grill & Bar menu item. Hot sauces, thin or thick, have also exploded into wing coating menu applications with everything from ghost pepper chiles to an Asian inspired delicious “Volcano Sauce” seen most recently as a wing sauce option at Twin Peaks.

I personally love hot sauces in all forms and particularly like the flavor of a Jamaican habanero sauce. One of my favorite recipes is adding blended smoked fruit such as smoked peach or pineapple to charred habanero. Its intense flavor and heat add a unique touch to chicken whether it be wings or an entree. Harissa is showing up, as well, and is utilized on the Zoes Kitchen menu as a condiment on top of Mediterranean Lamb Kafta Meatballs.

Not just reserved for food, Hot sauces have also recently taken the stage in the form of a cocktail ingredient. At Middle Branch, a hip NYC bar, The Torchlight is created with honey, blanco tequila, fresh lime juice and Cholula. Bourbon has seen a renaissance like no other spirit—and one of my favorite marriages is hot sauce in a bourbon sour along with egg white, agave syrup, fresh lemon juice and garnished with a grilled chile and blood orange segment.

At Custom Culinary® we pride ourselves on creating fresh authentic flavors of hot sauces, relishes, condiments, and jams. Our chefs and diligent marketing team work tirelessly to scan the world for the newest flavors to add to your menus. Just check out our website and see for yourself! Cheers!

David Russell
Corporate Executive Chef - CEC, CAA
Custom Culinary, Inc.